RAIN 9/19: RAIN Summit takes on webcasting's obstacles and celebrates its achievements

Paul Maloney
September 19, 2012 - 1:30pm


More than 250 attendees
, sponsors, and panelists joined us yesterday in the beautiful Wedgwood Room of the Hilton Anatole for RAIN Summit Dallas, the 2012 edition of our annual fall event (timed to immediately precede the RAB NAB Radio Show). 

The day's highlights included the keynote address from Clear Channel President of National Sales, Marketing, and Partnerships Tim Castelli (see RAIN coverage, including the SoundCloud link to audio of his address, in today's issue). Tim focused on the transformation of his company from a collection of locally-centered radio groups to the nation's largest media company with a 360-degree approach focused on content. Listen to Castelli's address via SoundCloud -- look for it today in RAIN

We also presented the 2012 RAIN Internet Radio Awards, which you can read about in today's issue.

A RAIN Summit traditon is publisher Kurt Hanson's "State of the Industry Address." This year, Kurt took lessons from Clayton Christensen's The Innovator's Dilemma to show how disruptive new technologies (in our case, Internet radio) usually unseat the incumbent industry leaders, but this needn't be the case: broadcasters, if they recognize the disruptive powers of digital and webcasting, can position themselves to be there when the mainstream makes that massive shift. And again, you can listen to Kurt's address via SoundCloud in today's issue.

RAIN Summit Dallas featured six 30-minute panel discussions covering topics like online radio content, social media tools, monetizing the growing audience using mobile devices, licensing and legal concerns, and online strategies geared to the local broadcaster. One panel, "Identifying Opportunities for Advertisers in Internet Radio," featured the IAB's Michael Theodore speaking to agency buyers about how they use the medium. Thanks to our panel moderators, who also included Edison Research's Sean Ross, Triton Digital's Jim Kerr, Inside Radio's Paul Heine, Wilkinson Barker Knauer's David Oxenford, and CBS Radio Dallas' Dan Halyburton. We'll be covering the panels in-depth soon, including audio.

Thanks also to knowDigital's Kelly Ellis for the update on her company's ongoing "Successful Audio Streaming Strategies" research, and to Radionomy's Thierry Ascarez, who announced his company is now launching in the U.S. market to allow consumers to create their own online radio station or discover online stations created by others.

And no RAIN Summit would be complete without the RAIN Reader Cocktail Party, held right in the Wedgwood Room hallway (a very classy space), which included a quick greeting from Pandora founder Tim Westergren. Look for photos from the party soon.

Paul Maloney
September 19, 2012 - 1:30pm

Kurt HansonESPN Audio and Pandora were named dual winners of the "Best Overal Online Radio Service" in the 2012 RAIN Internet Radio Awards, announced today in Dallas. The awards, presented by a tuxedo-ed RAIN publisher Kurt Hanson, capped yesterday's successful RAIN Summit event.

Both services received perfect scores across the segment of our judges panel that reviewed them. It was Pandora's third consecutive "Best Overall" award, and one of two on the day for ESPN (ESPNRadio.com was named "Best Streaming Broadcast Station"). Pandora founder Tim Westergren was on-hand to accept his company's award; ESPN Radio Director of Digital and Print Media Revenue and Operations Cory Smith accepted ESPN's awards (pictured left; who also spoke at RAIN Summit). 

Cory Smith with ESPN's awards

The "Best Overall Digital Strategy" Award went to Clear Channel's digital service iHeartRadio (accepted by Clear Channel Media + Entertainment and SVP of iHeartRadio Network Owen Grover, who spoke at the Summit). And congratulations to Dallas-based webcaster RoothogRadio.com for being named the 2012 "Best Single-Stream Webcaster."

Special congratulations to Ezra Kucharz, President, Local Digital Media at CBS (pictured at right), for his special recognition with Triton Digital's RAINMaker Achievement Award.

Since 2010, the RAIN Internet Radio Awards have recognized the achievements and the best practices of the Internet radio industry.

Look for more coverage from RAIN Summit Dallas (and search #RAINSummit on Twitter), including audio, soon from RAIN.

Michael Schmitt
September 19, 2012 - 1:30pm

Tim CastelliClear Channel President of National Sales, Marketing and Partnerships Tim Castelli delivered the keynote address of RAIN Summit Dallas on Tuesday. His presentation focused on how digital and mobile can benefit and "bring the sexy back" to radio (channeling a little Justin Timberlake).

In particular, he emphasized that "digital is additive to our listening and brands," and that mobile is "the best opportunity for radio" right now.

You can listen to Tim's full presentation below. Thanks to SoundCloud for hosting the audio!

Michael Schmitt
September 19, 2012 - 1:30pm

Kurt Hanson delivering his State of the Industry addressRAIN publisher and AccuRadio CEO/founder Kurt Hanson delivered his "State of the Industry" address at RAIN Summit Dallas.

He touched on various topics, including of how radio is entering a fourth golden age and how broadcasters can respond to the possible "innovator's dilemma" of Internet radio. Hanson also explained the importance of 801(b) to the future of web radio, especially when compared to the dangerous "gibberish" of "willing buyer/willing seller."

You can listen to Kurt's full keynote presentation below. Thanks to SoundCloud for hosting our audio!